The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Zelda: Breath of the Wild Quick Links

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
BotW NA Logo.png
BotW NA Switch Box Art.png
American Switch version box art
Developer(s) Nintendo
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Designer(s) Hidemaro Fujibayashi (director)
Eiji Aonuma (producer/group manager)
Release date
March 3, 2017[1]
Platform(s) Wii U
Nintendo Switch
Predecessor Tri Force Heroes
StrategyWiki Favicon.png Guide/Walkthrough at StrategyWiki
ZU-logo.png Breath of the Wild Guide at Zelda Universe

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the nineteenth mainline The Legend of Zelda game. It was released simultaneously worldwide for the Wii U and Nintendo Switch on March 3, 2017.[1]



Link awakens from a deep sleep and a mysterious voice guides him to discover what has become of the ruined Kingdom of Hyrule. Link meets an Old Man and learns from him that 100 years prior, a great evil known as the Calamity Ganon rose up and laid waste to Hyrule. Unable to be defeated, it was sealed within Hyrule Castle while the ruins of the land were ravaged by nature over time. Although trapped, the Calamity Ganon has grown in power, and Link must defeat it before it breaks free and destroys the world.[2][3][4]

Game Information


The Zelda HD Experience, a The Legend of Zelda tech demo of the Wii U, was shown at E3 2011. On June 20, 2011, Shigeru Miyamoto confirmed that Nintendo is planning on creating an HD The Legend of Zelda title.[5]

Breath of the Wild was officially announced in the Wii U Direct presentation on January 23, 2013. Eiji Aonuma stated that the game intended to challenge what was expected of The Legend of Zelda games, such as the player having to complete dungeons in a specific order or that it is a single player experience. The game was expected to have a long development time, so Nintendo released The Wind Waker HD for the Wii U to decrease the gap between releases.[6] During E3 2014, the first video of the game was shown, revealing Link riding Epona, in addition to a Guardian and Hyrule Field. Link was seen wearing an outfit similar to the one used in The Wind Waker. Eiji Aonuma responded to fan reactions to the character's design stating that the character was not explicitly stated to be Link,[7] but later stated that he was joking.[8]

During the Game Awards 2014, Miyamoto and Aonuma showed a new gameplay video. It demonstrated the scale of Hyrule, which was designed with the open world concept of the original The Legend of Zelda in mind.[9] It also showed the use of the Sailcloth and the use of beacons for pointing out important landmarks in the huge overworld. Different from previous games, riding horses is done automatically, with Link only needing to steer. This was made in order to focus on the surroundings with the fully controllable camera and on combat with the Sword or Bow while riding. Link is also able to vault and slow the game in order to attack enemies more precisely. If an enemy is hit by an Arrow, a metallic sound will play. Enemies also show a life meter above them, similar to when the Hero's Charm is worn in The Wind Waker.

The game was originally planned to be released in 2015, but due to new ideas added during the game's development, the release date was pushed forward past 2015.[10] During E3 2015, Shigeru Miyamoto reassured in an IGN interview that the game is still planned for a Wii U release and has some "great footage," but is not ready to be shown yet.[11] During the Nintendo Direct in November 2015, it was announced that the game is still slated for a 2016 release.[12] In financial documents released in March 2016, the game was shown to have been delayed to a 2017 release.[13] This was also confirmed later in Nintendo's Twitter. Breath of the Wild was also confirmed to be released simultaneously on both the Wii U and Nintendo Switch.

During E3 2016, the first playable demo was shown. It showed many new features of the game, such as the Flurry Rush, the creation of Food by collecting Materials, the use of enemy weapons, the return of the Stamina Gauge, new mini-dungeons called Shrines, and the Sheikah Slate, a new item which has multiple abilities called Runes. The demo only featured the Great Plateau area.

Timeline Placement

On February 09, 2017, before the game's release, Eiji Aonuma revealed that the game takes place after Ocarina of Time;[14] however, he did not specify how far after Ocarina of Time or in which branch of the timeline.

During Recovered Memory #1, Princess Zelda officially appoints Link as her knight by performing the "ceremony of legend". She recites the legendary words which say that "whether skyward bound, adrift in time, or steeped in the glowing embers of twilight...the sacred blade is forever bound to the soul of the Hero" in reference to Link's past adventures in Skyward Sword, Ocarina of Time, and Twilight Princess, respectively.[15] While unconfirmed, it is widely speculated that the game likely takes place after Twilight Princess in the far future of the Child Timeline.

amiibo Support

Main article: amiibo (Rune)

Breath of the Wild is compatible with all lines of amiibo figures, scan-able by using the amiibo Rune ability, which can be activated via the game's options menu.

All regular amiibo will grant random items and materials, while most The Legend of Zelda-related amiibo will summon treasure chests, containing rarer and sometimes exclusive items (like costumes or special weapons related to the respective games). Additionally, Epona and Wolf Link may be summoned into the game, using the Super Smash Bros. Link and the Wolf Link amiibo, respectively.

Limited Editions

The Master Edition

Various limited editions for the Switch version are set to be released worldwide. In North America, the Special Edition includes the game, a tapestry map, a Sheikah Slate carrying case, a soundtrack with 24 songs, and a Sheikah Eye coin. The Master Edition includes the same contents as the Special Edition plus a Master Sword statue. In Europe, the Limited Edition includes the game, the soundtrack, and the Master Sword statue. In Australia, the Limited Edition includes the game, the tapestry map, the soundtrack, the Sheikah Eye coin, and the Master Sword statue. In Japan, the Collector's Edition includes the game, the Link (Rider) amiibo, the soundtrack, the tapestry map, and an interchangeable alternate cover. The Deluxe Collector's Edition includes the same contents as the Collector's Edition plus the Master Sword statue and 20 postcards. The Wii U version does not have any limited editions.

Pre-Order Bonuses

By pre-ordering the game in various retailers, a bonus item was also included.[16] These include a black t-shirt featuring the Sheikah Eye in the Nintendo Official UK Store, a Z icon keyring and a poster featuring artwork from the game in GAME retailers, a wristband in Grainger Games, two double-sized art cards in Argos, and a pin badge in ShopTo. In GameStop retailers, a poster featuring the game's cover artwork was included.[17]

Downloadable Content


An update for the retail, Wii U version of the game containing extra game data is required to be installed in order to run the game. The update requires 3 GB worth of space to be installed.[18]

DLC Packs

BotW Expansion Pass NA Logo.png

On February 14, 2017, Breath of the Wild producer Eiji Aonuma announced that a series of paid downloadable content would be released for the game, known as the Expansion Pass. The Expansion Pass is available for purchase for ¥2500 / $19.99 USD / $28.19 CDN / €19.99 / £17.99 / $30.00 AUD / $33.00 NZD alongside the full game beginning on March 3, 2017.[19] The Pass is available for both Wii U and Nintendo Switch and features a staggered release of content, though individual content packs cannot be purchased individually.[20] Each Pack and its contents are as follows:

Expansion Pass
Pack Release Date Content
Expansion Pass Bonus March 3, 2017 Three new Treasure Chests which spawn on the Great Plateau containing:[21]
  • Two "useful items"
  • A shirt depicting the Nintendo Switch logo
DLC Pack 1 Summer 2017[22] Cave of Trials
Hard Mode
"Additional Map feature"
DLC Pack 2 Holiday 2017[23] A "new original story"
A new dungeon
"Additional challenges"



  • Breath of the Wild is the first main game in the series to be localized into Russian and Dutch. Eiji Aonuma himself appeared in the Russian and Dutch Nintendo Switch presentations to introduce the game to Russian, Dutch, and Flemish players.[24][25] Although the Dutch localization is text only whilst retaining the English voice-overs, the Russian localization covers both text and voice acting.
  • During development of Breath of the Wild, various designs for Link were planned, including him riding a bike in a tracksuit and a musician Link wielding a guitar.[26] Other concepts for the game included Hyrule Wars and The Legend of Zelda Invasion, the latter featuring an alien attack.[27]


External Links


  1. 1.0 1.1 Nintendo, Nintendo Switch Presentation 2017, YouTube, published January 12, 2017, retrieved January 12, 2017.
  2. "I assume you have caught full sight of that atrocity swarming around the castle. That... is the Calamity Ganon. It brought ruin and corruption upon the kingdom of Hyrule 100 years ago. It appeared suddenly... destroying everything in its path. Leaving countless innocents in its wake. Over the last century, the kingdom's purest symbol, Hyrule Castle, has been able to contain that evil. But just barely. There it festers, building its strength for the moment it will unleash its blight upon the land once again. It would appear that moment is fast approaching" — Old Man (Breath of the Wild).
  3. "A mysterious female voice over beckons Link to "open his eyes." Our hero has been asleep for 100 years, a callback to Link's previous adventures but he wakes up to some dire circumstances: the world has been ravaged in the time Link's been asleep by Calamity Ganon, a fog-like beast that creates a dark mist around what looks like Hyrule Castle. The voice tells Link if this calamity gains enough power, he could bring the world to an end."E3 2016: THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: BREATH OF THE WILD MIGHT BE THE OPEN WORLD ZELDA WE ALWAYS WANTED, .
  4. "The looming threat to Hyrule is equally familiar. Not long after the game starts, you learn that a being called Calamity Ganon had been trapped in Hyrule Castle for 100 years. In seeming tie to Link's own awakening, Ganon has been gathering power and is right on the cusp of breaking loose. Should that happen, Hyrule is doomed."Freeform exploration in the new 'Zelda' game is an NES throwback, .
  5. "This is an HD system, our first HD system, and we want to create a real HD Zelda game for it. You will see a lot of these in-depth and deep experiences in terms of visual style. You will also see some play styles that are fun and interesting because of the play structure."How the Wii U One Ups Television, Kotaku.
  6. Nintendo, Wii U Direct Presentation - 23.01.2013, YouTube.
  7. "No one explicitly said that that was Link."Exclusive: That might not have been Link in the Wii U Zelda trailer, producer teases, Venture Beat.
  8. "It's a rumour. Actually that comment I made jokingly. It's not that I said that it wasn't Link. It's that I never said that it was Link. It's not really the same thing, but I can understand how it could be taken that way. It seems like it has kind of taken off where people are saying 'oh it's a female character' and it just kind of grew. But my intent in saying that was humour. You know, you have to show Link when you create a trailer for a Zelda announcement. I don't want people to get hung up on the way Link looks because ultimately Link represents the player in the game. I don't want to define him so much that it becomes limiting to the players. I want players to focus on other parts of the trailer and not specifically on the character because the character Link represents, again, the player."Aonuma confirms that Link was the character featured in Zelda Wii U's debut video, Nintendo Everything.
  9. "One of the main things we wanted to do was go back to the open-world concept of the original 'Zelda' games and design with that in mind." — Derrik J. Lang, Miyamoto on 'Amiibo,' 'Zelda' and 'Mario' Movie, ABC News, retrieved December 18, 2014.
  10. "So, I must apologize to you all that were expecting the game by year's end, but we are no longer making a 2015 release our number one priority." — Nintendo, Eiji Aonuma, producer of The Legend of Zelda, has a message to share., Facebook, published March 27, 2015, retrieved March 27, 2015.
  11. "Miyamoto assured fans by stating through an IGN interview that the game is still planned to be released for the Wii U, and stated that 'great footage' would be revealed at some point in the future — just 'not today'." — Eduardo Hernandez, Miyamoto has 'great footage' to show off for Zelda Wii U, just 'not today', Zelda Universe, published June 16, 2015.
  12. Nintendo, Nintendo Direct November 2015, YouTube.
  13. Nintendo, Earnings Release for Fiscal Year Ended March 2016, Nintendo, published April 27, 2016, retrieved April 27, 2016.
  14. Game Informer, 51 Questions And Answers About The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild, YouTube, published February 09, 2017, retrieved February 11, 2017.
  15. "Whether skyward bound, adrift in time, or steeped in the glowing embers of twilight...The sacred blade is forever bound to the soul of the Hero." — Princess Zelda (Breath of the Wild)
  16. "The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild marks its long awaited release for Nintendo Switch and Wii U on 3rd March 2017! You can see the latest trailer for this epic open-air adventure below but if you've already decided to embark on Link's next journey then read on below to see what free bonus items you can get with your pre-order across UK retailers..."The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Pre-order Item Guide, Nintendo UK, published January 31, 2017, retrieved February 19, 2017.
  17. Pre-Order and Pick-up The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and receive an Exclusive Poster!, GameStop, retrieved February 19, 2017.
  18. "The page now includes an additional note specifically about the game on Wii U. For those who plan on playing the physical version, some game data will need to be installed. More than 3 GB of space is needed in the console’s storage or USB storage device. It seems that USB memory devices (memory stick) can’t be used." — Brian, Zelda: Breath of the Wild's Wii U retail version comes with a 3 GB install, Nintendo Everything, published January 16, 2017, retrieved February 19, 2017.
  19. "Starting when The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild launches on March 3, players will be able to purchase an Expansion Pass for $19.99, granting access to two new sets of downloadable content for the game when they become available later this year." — Nintendo, A Special Announcement from Eiji Aonuma, The Legend of Zelda official site, published February 14, 2017, retrieved February 14, 2017.
  20. "The Expansion Pass will be available for both the Nintendo Switch and Wii U versions of the game and are identical. Content packs cannot be purchased individually." — Nintendo, A Special Announcement from Eiji Aonuma, The Legend of Zelda official site, published February 14, 2017, retrieved February 14, 2017.
  21. "Immediately upon pre-purchase or purchase of the Expansion Pass, three new treasure chests will appear in the game's Great Plateau area. One of these treasure chests will contain a shirt with a Nintendo Switch logo that Link can wear during his adventure, exclusive to the Expansion Pass. The other two will deliver useful items." — Nintendo, A Special Announcement from Eiji Aonuma, The Legend of Zelda official site, published February 14, 2017, retrieved February 14, 2017.
  22. "The first content pack is scheduled to launch this summer and will include the addition of a Cave of Trials challenge, a new hard mode, and a new feature for the in-game map." — Nintendo, A Special Announcement from Eiji Aonuma, The Legend of Zelda official site, published February 14, 2017, retrieved February 14, 2017.
  23. "The second content pack will launch in Holiday 2017, and adds new challenges that will let players enjoy a new dungeon and a new original story." — Nintendo, A Special Announcement from Eiji Aonuma, The Legend of Zelda official site, published February 14, 2017, retrieved February 14, 2017.
  24. Nintendo Russia, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild — Трейлер Презентация Nintendo Switch, YouTube (Video), published January 13, 2017, retrieved January 19, 2017.
  25. NintendoNederland, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Aankondiging Nederlandse versie door Eiji Aonuma, YouTube (Video), published February 18, 2017, retrieved February 18, 2017.
  26. "Link himself went through some trial and error. Meet Biker Link, Tracksuit Link and Musician Link." — Nintendo of America, GDC 2017, Twitter, published March 1, 2017, retrieved March 1, 2017.
  27. "Before there was #Zelda: Breath of the Wild there was.. Hyrule Wars? And an alien attack!? The early concepts were definitely wild." — Nintendo of America, GDC 2017, Twitter, published March 1, 2017, retrieved March 1, 2017.
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